If you’ve been hesitant to use a gel nail kit at home, let us hit you with two pieces of good news: It’s now easier than ever to score a flawless DIY manicure or pedicure from your couch, and there are tons of starter kit options available online.
The perks of a gel manicure are endless. The whole process takes just a few simple steps, there’s no dry time (meaning no smudges) and, with the right tools, you can do it while you’re watching TV. Plus, since the popularity of gel nail kits has soared in recent years, there are now enough shades of gel polishes to rival those of regular nail polish.
We’ve rounded up the best gel nail kits out there, many of which include everything you need from start to finish: a UV light, a base coat, a top coat, cuticle oil and — of course — the perfect shade of nail polish. (Keep in mind that any gel manicure is going to be a pain to take off, but this how-to guide will help tremendously.)
So kick back, shop our favorite at home nail kits and get a salon-worthy manicure without leaving your house.
Red Carpet Manicure
The name says it all: Red Carpet Manicure. This kit comes with everything you need for a celeb-worthy look, including an LED light, a nail primer, a base coat, nail polish, a top coat, cuticle oil, foils, wipes and nail polish remover. The light will cure your nails in under 45 seconds.
Here’s another great option if you’re new to at-home gel manicures. This Gelish starter kit includes a mini LED light, two red shades of gel polish and a range of tools to apply and remove them.
This all-inclusive gel nail kit includes an LED nail lamp and six gorgeous nail colors as well as anything else you could possibly need to get a salon-quality manicure — top and base coats, cuticle oil, a nail file and buffer, two nail brushes, a cuticle fork and pusher, nail clippers and a nail separator. Hot tip from the manufacturer: Apply gel to the edge of each nail to seal the gel and avoid chipping.
We’re blown away by how many pieces this kit includes — you’ll find all the usual suspects in a starter kit like a UV lamp and polishes, plus add-ons like nail decorations and toe separators.
if you’re all set on nail polish but need a new (or better) LED lamp, this dryer is a good pick. It works with all brands and types of gel polish, and it’s spacious enough for people with bigger hands and/or longer fingers. This lamp is so good that you might see it in a professional salon.
Le Mini Macaron
This cute little kit is USB-powered, so you can plug it in pretty much anywhere — even into your laptop. You’ll be doing your nails one at a time, and the polish cures in 30 seconds flat. This kit comes with a macaroon-inspired LED lamp that flips open for pedicures, red gel polish, a cuticle stick, a nail file and 10 polish remover wraps.
Never thought of yourself as a press-on nail kind of girl? Try this foolproof, peachy-colored set. All you have to do is swipe your nails with the alcohol pad, find your proper size of nail using the enclosed number key, peel off the clear backing and apply by pressing firmly on the nail.
If you’re used to getting dip manis, you can now do it at home in three steps! This set includes a bond, base coat, activator, top coat, brush saver and five pretty powder colors. This kind of manicure doesn’t involve gels or an LED lamp, but it is a cool kit that’ll get you long-lasting nails.
Whether you’re trying to remove a salon manicure or one you’ve done yourself, resist the urge to pick at it and risk damaging your nails. This gel remover kit gets even the toughest job done — just add acetone remover to the pot, let the low-temperature steam loosen the polish on your nails and then gently scrape off the rest with a file or cuticle stick.
What goes on must come off, and gel polish is notorious for being hard to remove. (It’s why we love it in the first place.) This remover kit has everything you’ll need to take off your gel polish in a five-step process: grind, wrap, clip, scratch and polish.
Each product has been selected, and each product’s style has been reviewed, by our editorial team; however, we may receive affiliate commissions from some links to products on this page. Prices listed are subject to change by the retailer.